Walking is a great way to increase your physical, mental, and social wellbeing. It’s also often an exercise; many of us are guilty of not doing enough that often. One great way of walking more is through walking challenges.
What is a walking challenge?
A walking challenge is a competition you set against yourself, friends, or strangers trying to outdo them in terms of steps, distance, and frequency of walks. Sometimes, when doing these challenges, you get badges or certificates for winning, and other times its just the pride to say you won. It also works as a fantastic way to get fit and in shape.
Types of walking challenges
A walking challenge is a competition, and it can be against yourself or anyone else. There are many different ways of taking part in walking challenges they are:
As mentioned below, there are many different free apps and software for you to take part in a walking challenge. Most of the time, the apps work off your mobile GPS or from your smartwatch, and your daily step rate is calculated. This gets uploaded to your phone, and then you get to compare and compete against friends.
On google images or Pinterest, there are many manual walking challenges which you can do against yourself. These challenges are often just a series of checkboxes with a target inside the checkbox for each day. Usually, it has a specific amount of miles to cover or pace of the walk. Then you tick off the day as you go along untill you’ve completed the challenge altogether.
Many events host walking challenges online, which involves you submitting photos or videos to their social media accounts. They are likewise using trending hashtags to show that you’re taking part in their challenge.
A great way to check if there are virtual walking challenges is to check websites like Active or Time Outdoors. They regularly show virtual walking challenges you can take part in. You can also filter via distance, price, date, and location. It’s worth checking out.
What do I need to take part in a walking challenge?
To take part in a walking challenge, you will need yourself and a tracking device. This is a device that serves as a way to monitor your steps and distance as this serves as sufficient evidence to track for apps and competitions. Before you talk part in a walking challenge, we’ve curated a list of the top devices to help you with your walks:
An Apple Watch is a little on the pricier side, depending on what model you purchase and the accessories; however, It’s worth buying for your walks. What’s unique about this watch is that it has rings that serve as goal trackers.
You can track daily goals such as steps and calories and calibrate with your weight and height. When you beat specific goals of milestones, you also get awards from Apple. It also monitors your heart rate and synchronizes with your iPhone.
Fitbit is another company that has a range of smartwatches and wearable wrist trackers. What’s fantastic about Fitbit is that it’s designed to keep you stepping/walking more. It records your step, heart rate, and sleep periods, all done via a tracker sensor. It connects to your phone via Bluetooth and uploads via the app.
Speaking of the app, it’s prevalent amongst the walking community. When you use the FitBit app, it allows you to take part in many challenges. For example, you can walk the distance of specific destinations and see iconic landmarks virtually.
Likewise, you can follow world-famous trails such as Valley Loop and Yosemite, which shows your progress the more your step. Also, you get a 180-degree view of each destination you unlock.
Similarly, when walking, you get to unlock and collect certain treasures which reach snippets of information. Depending on how much you walk for each day, you get specific badges like a daily showdown, goal day, weekend warrior, and workweek hustle.
Fitbit also allows you to compete against other friends who have the device in walking activities, and you get placed on their leaderboard.
This brand is a great one to consider for walking challenges. Garmin has a variety of sports watches out there available to monitor your walks. The fantastic thing about Garmins is that they are great for battery life and can last for days, if not weeks.
Garmin also goes off your GPS, monitors your heart rate, how much you climb in walking and music. Like other watches, Garmin syncs to your smartphones Bluetooth and uploads all the data into their app.
Unlike the Apple watch, you can use Android or iOS for Garmin. Similarly, the app allows you to track your progress and set yourself your challenges based on the goals. Also, there is a leaderboard where you can see your walking progress against yourself, friends, and strangers.
Polar is also a great brand that has smartwatches designed for walking. Their watches integrate with your GPS and tracks your activity all the time, which is excellent for your challenges. It also calculates how many calories you burn and your sleep quality.
Sunnto has a range of watches designed to accompany you on your walking challenges. It also uses GPS to track your distance and guides you through its offline mapping feature. Suunto also lets you upload your data to your phone and compare it against other friends.
This Google Smartwatch is excellent for walking challenges. The watch itself syncs with your Android and has hands free help. It easily integrates with Google Maps and Google Fit for your walking challenges. Not forgetting Strava!
Apps to track your walks and take part in challenges
If you don’t have a watch, there are certain apps you can use on your phone, which can track your walks and take part in challenges. They are the following:
This is a charity run initiative that allows you to walk and collect achievements. You can use World Walking on your desktop or your smartphone. It’s free and easy to use you. The walking challenges on this software enable you to walk distances across the World.
It allows you to filter your challenge by country, continent, and steps. Then it awards you with badges and motivates you to compete. You can also compete with your friends.
Walk The Distance
If you don’t have a smartwatch and only an iPhone, this app may be for you. Walk The Distances synchronizes with your apple health app. Based on the steps you generate, you get to walk along with virtual routines such as the Appalachian Trail, The Boston Marathon, etc.
This walking challenge is slightly a little bit different from the other ones. Charity miles allows you to challenge yourself for a great cause.
The app is free to download; however, you have to select your charity, and then every mile you walk, you earn money for your chosen charity. Due to its corporate sponsorship pool, and funds go from them to your charity.
Stride Kick is a free app that allows you to connect to a range of fitness trackers. Once on the app, you can challenge yourself. You can create step challenges for yourself, friends, and family to compete in this app.
There are also company step challenges where you can participate with your co-workers in the office. You can participate in community challenges too.
Count it is an app that synchronizes with your device and is free to use. It allows you to track your steps and compete against others within your local community.
You can also battle against others across the World and synchronize it to your Slack channels! It also has additional challenges and leagues, alongside a few more benefits.
My Virtual Mission
This app lets you participate and sync your phone with Strava as that monitors your distance and steps you’ve taken. If you opt for a challenge, you get to choose different missions to tackle and take part in them.
To be honest, here at Walkathon, we feel that walking challenges serve as a great way to get you walking more. This source of motivation and a little friendly competition will allow you to enjoy walking physical, mental, and social benefits.
Remember when you can participate in a virtual, app-based, or manual one when doing a walking challenge.
Whether you choose to do it against yourself, friends, or strangers, try a walking challenge today.